bertie's blog
bertie's blog
Age: 46
Home: Bournemouth
Occupation: pilot
Blog Description
A successful 2007 Rally! Flying in France again.
My Aircraft...
Description: Luscombe Silvaire, 8E, Nov 1946. Silver/Blue.
Location: Near Compton Abbas, North Dorset, UK.
last days
September 2006
Flying Moments...
First solo in Hong Kong.
First visual approach in a 757.
First display.
Managing to attract 28 Luscombes to the first ever Luscombe Rally!
Too many to mention!
Additional Information


Saturday, 02 September 2006
Sally, my girlfriend has been pestering me to start up a blog of what I get up to in my flying world, so after some thought, I'm going to give it a try..

I'm very fortunate to own a 1946 luscombe silvaire 8E, a two seater, 85hp'd all metal aircraft, with a max take off weight of 1400lbs, cruising at 90 knots.She is possibly the only surviving model 8E out of the original 65 aircraft constructed in Nov 1946, making her the earliest 8E in existence. We've enjoyed each others company over the last 16 years and I've been displaying her and other aircraft for 7 of those years.

G-Brug is based on a lovely private strip near Compton Abbas, in the heart of the Dorset countryside in southern England. The strip is 1500' long and is grass, ideal for the Luscombe. Situated on top of a 500' hill the view is stunning and represents the classic English country picture postcard!

I fly Brug in all sorts of weather, have flown her at night{she's fully equipped for night flying, being an 'E'} and take her across the water often, again in all sorts of weather!
In order to keep up to speed, I regularly practice instument flying and Navigating without GPS at low level,{although Sally is a great Navigator, a graet help in poor weather!}

As an example of a typical day out, I awoke the other morning to a very windy and gusty day. So off I went to the strip to be greeted by winds from the Northwest varying in strength from 18 to 28 knots across runway '25'. She handles crosswinds well, with almost full cross controls, in these sort of conditons. With the correct technique, I believe she will handle 20 knots across- with practice! Northwest seems to be worst direction for this strip as the 'Curlover' from the trees produces unstable wind strength, hence the reason for the practice, not wishing to be caught out one day! The 'sink' on the approach is severe sometimes requiring 80% power to overcome the down draught, so increasing one's speed by 5-7 miles an hour would be prudent. Having scared the hell out of myself in the circuit, I climb out to the Northwest to practice Engine failures from between 1500' and 300'. I always take her down to ground level, not infringing the 500' rule,{then I KNOW I've got it right!} and never practice in the same place which would upset the locals.. I use the constant bearing technique, turning down wind{espeacialy on a windy day} to increase my chances of selecting a suiatable field. As on this day, with it being so windy, I will almost circle overhead of the field I've chosen as the Luscombe sideslips so well. If I've slightly undershot my target, I push the nose down hard to penetrate into wind, normal glidespeed will compound the problem{ a very common mistake made by pilots in windy weather }. Having completed around 5 of these practices, I finish of with a full practice of my display at height and at low level at Compton Abbas. The display comprises of a series of Chandells,alternate one wheel rollers{interesting on a windy day!},severe sideslips, a flat turn and comming to a halt on the main gear with the Tail still up{difficult on a windy day with brake fade etc}. Then it's back to the strip and practice perfomance landings and finaly I put Brug to bed, pleased we're still in one piece! I do this stuff at least once a month. I really enjoy the challenge of all this and it's a credit to the long term thinking of the designers in the Luscombes' strength and flying prowess.

This aircraft has to be flown with co-ordinated aileron and rudder, so typical of the aircraft designed in the 30's. There is no differential in the ailerons. Visibility is poor above and behind the cockpit, again typical of high wing aircraft, so a window above the pilots head is most useful!
With a good Tailwheel set up, the luscombe is reluctant to groundloop in crosswinds of 10 knots or less.

Well, that was one great afternoons' flying, I find it so difficult to just fly around in a straight line! I'll talk about my formation flying soon, which I particulary love, alongside my friends Luscombe, and it's close too! Im very lucky to have all this..

Tomorrow I will fly a boeing 767 with 300 passengers to Cuba for a week,enjoying the sun, reflecting on the flying I've been putting in this week and how lucky I am! I'll be thinking of a few humourus stories to include on my Blog as this blog seems a little dull, will try harder! Cheers, Nige.
Nige posted @ 12:26 - Link - comments